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Swimming Pool Fencing: Eleventh-hour Backdown

Swimming Pool Fencing: Eleventh-hour Backdown

Press Release:- Pool Owners Action Group (POAG) Chairman: Gary Osborne http://poag.org.nz/

In less than 3 years Waitakere City Council has issued more than 644 prosecution notices to its swimming pool owners.

Despite Judge Randerson's decision on 1 October 2004, the Council has refused to be gracious in defeat but instead adopted the stance of a bully and remained "bloody-minded."

It has continued to persecute pool owners with a plethora of prosecutions of a dubious nature.

Only now, more than 4 months after the Judgment, is it prepared to capitulate. On 24 November it set up an Exemption regime at the inaugural meeting of the new Council.

On 1 December Denis Sheard, Legal Services Manager, advised 193 cases had been reviewed in light of Randerson J's decision, yet on being asked next day when people would be advised of the outcome, merely replied "in due course."

As at 14 January numerous members of POAG had still not been advised of the outcome. With several cases due for call-over on 7 February, naturally, there was some anxiety.

Councillors were advised not to reply to correspondence.

On Wednesday 2 February I asked Denis Sheard how many call-overs were due on 7 February.

On Thursday 3 February I addressed the Henderson Community Board on the matter.

At 10.03 am on Friday 4 February Denis Sheard advised me there were 32 properties listed for Monday 7 February. A number of prosecutions "WILL BE WITHDRAWN." --- But hang on, Monday's less than 1 working day away!

At 12.30 pm John Koolen, Prosecution Officer for WCC, marched into the Court with 24 withdrawals.

What shabby, abysmal contempt this Council has for its ratepayers!!

IT IS TO BE HOPED THAT THOSE WHO DON"T RECEIVE ADVICE IN TIME AND INCUR LEGAL COSTS OR TIME OFF WORK WILL SUE THE COUNCIL FOR THEIR APPROPRIATE COSTS!!!


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